After failing to step onto the podium in Australia, Ferrari made a strong comeback in Bahrain. The Italian team looked to have unlocked some extra pace from their package as they claimed the front row for the 999th Grand Prix.
It was Ferrari’s 62nd front-row lockout with new boy Charles Leclerc beating experienced teammate Sebastian Vettel to claim the first pole of his career in just his second race for the team. The Monegasque driver became the second youngest driver ever to claim pole, an
In Q2, the German was held up by traffic and forced to change
Ferrari will look to control the race from the start so the run to the first corner will be crucial on
“This first pole position brings me a lot of emotions, even if I’m trying to stay as cool as possible, as there are no points for pole position and the race is tomorrow. It has been a great day and a great weekend overall for the team so far, so I hope it will continue tomorrow. I said it was a question of putting everything together for qualifying and it seems I did it, unlike what happened in the first race.
It’s an amazing feeling but now we have to focus on the race and try to bring home the best possible result tomorrow. I feel more comfortable in the car lap after lap so I’m satisfied. Before the race we will talk with the team to find the perfect strategy in order to give the Scuderia the best possible result. The start will probably be the key as the track is dirty and it’s easy to have wheelspin”.
“Today we were in the fight. The main thing is we are back where we want to be. It’s tomorrow that counts, but for today we can certainly be very happy as we are in a much better place than two weeks ago. Today it’s about Ferrari and about Charles who did a very very good job and nailed his laps in Q3 and he deserved to be on pole. He’s a good kid, actually, a good man, because once you get a pole in Formula 1 you are a man! It’s a big achievement and I am happy for him. Chapeau! Our one lap pace was there the whole weekend and we were able to confirm this in qualifying. I’m a lot happier today and it’s good to see that we are back on the right track”.
We are all very
pleased for Ferrari, for Charles’ very first pole, for having locked down the
first row and for our comeback after Australia. The team reacted strongly and
worked well, united and focused. It’s a great team, a very good team. There’s
also an excellent spirit of cooperation between our drivers and Charles is
indeed a good kid. Our qualifying pace was good but it was a tough one and it’s
tomorrow that really counts. It’s a very long way to the chequered flag and
reliability will be important. We need to stay calm and concentrated, as our
rivals will be trying to make our life difficult tomorrow. It’s a long season,
so let’s take it step by step.